"Gautama" is the family name of the Buddha, whose given name was Siddhartha. He assumed the title of "Buddha" at the age of about 36, when, after 7 years of seclusion and spiritual struggle, he attained enlightenment. He died near the end of the 6th century bc. His companions, the Bodhisattvas, are spiritual beings who postpone their own enlightenment in order to aid mortals. Munakata is admired for his dedication to his heritage and his religion and for the dynamic rhythms and vitality of his black-and-white compositions. This print was commissioned by The Print Club of Cleveland (the support group for The Cleveland Museum of Art's Department of Prints and Drawings) for their annual print publication for the year 1960.
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